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Pradeep Pattanayak

Uproarious scenes unfolded at Urban Primary Health Centre at Sunhat in Balasore after hundreds of beneficiaries who had been waiting for hours in queues to take Covid vaccine booster dose were denied jabs.

According to a report, hundreds of people thronged at the centre from as early as 5 am today morning to get booster dose.

While most of the people in queues had enrolled their names on site, their patience broke loose when  the hospital authorities informed them that those who have booked slots online would be vaccinated first.

The sudden announcement irked the people waiting for vaccination. The picture turned ugly as the angry locals locked the medical officer as protest. 

“Yesterday I had come to the hospital to receive booster dose but was asked to go back as the entire stock used up. I was asked to come early on Saturday to receive the jab. Accordingly, I along with hundred others came to the centre at around 5 am today and waited till 8.30 am. Then we were told that booster doses would be given to online beneficiaries only. We suffered because the authorities hadn’t put up any banner/poster outside the centre,” said an aggrieved beneficiary. 

When asked, the medical officer of the centre said, “We feel sorry for the people who waited in queues for long hours to get booster doses. But what can we do? The yesterday’s rule of offline administration of booster dose changed in the evening.”

“At the same time, the number of people outnumbered the number of doses available. By 9.30am, the doses meant for offline beneficiaries were exhausted, leading to the chaotic situation. Even though I contacted the CDMO, he couldn’t offer any help,” said Sunhat medical officer.

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